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Save the Last Dance

Music . Romance . Family . Drama

A white midwestern girl moves to Chicago, where her new boyfriend is a black teen from the South Side with a rough, semi-criminal past.

Actors: Artel Great , Elisabeth Oas , Garland Whitt , Vince Green , Bianca Lawson , Terry Kinney , Fredro Starr , Kerry Washington , Sean Patrick Thomas , Julia Stiles
Directors: Thomas Carter
Country: USA
Release: 2001-01-12
More Info:
  • Roger Ebert

    Above all, this is a movie where the characters ask the same questions we do: They're as smart about themselves as we are.

    Chicago Sun-Times Full Review
  • Mark Caro

    Sure, you've seen some of these moves before, but Save the Last Dance triumphantly passes the audition.

    Chicago Tribune Full Review
  • Gemma Files

    Breaks virtually no new narrative ground, yet treads the familiar territory it does cover with grace, style, wit and fun. Full Review
  • Kevin Thomas

    The story comes full circle in a way that might seem overly schematic did it not have the courage to wear its heart on its sleeve without losing its head.

    Los Angeles Times Full Review
  • Desson Thomson

    This is a spirited, dirty dance between the polished inauthenticity of Hollywood romance-musicals and hip-hop's central tenet: keeping it real. It's an intriguing combination, if nothing else.

    Washington Post Full Review
  • Sara Wildberger

    All in all it's a decent, well-put-together romantic drama to hold hands to on the weekend.

    Miami Herald Full Review
  • Steven Rea

    While it flirts with "After School Special"-ness, at least has the courage to address racial and cultural cliches with a degree of honesty.

    Philadelphia Inquirer Full Review
  • Jay Carr

    The most traditional of Hollywood romances, in that it's resolutely about nice people with nice problems.

    Boston Globe Full Review
  • Chuck Wilson

    It's pretty good, really.

    L.A. Weekly Full Review
  • Peter Travers

    Carter can't sidestep the script's cliches, so he wisely cuts to the fancy footwork whenever possible.

    Rolling Stone Full Review
  • Bill Gallo

    This sweet-tempered retelling of "Romeo and Juliet," which substitutes uplift for tragedy, gives off enough energy and light that the audience wants to believe in it even if society's impacted prejudices continue to say otherwise.

    Dallas Observer Full Review
  • A.O. Scott

    Bland but poised.

    The New York Times Full Review
  • Jami Bernard

    It's about as routine a movie as they come, but it features plenty of endorphin-releasing hip-hop choreography as Derek teaches Sara to get jiggy with it.

    New York Daily News Full Review
  • Wesley Morris

    The result is more like an epic "After School Special" -- preachy, runny and oddly warm.

    San Francisco Chronicle Full Review
  • Susan Wloszczyna

    Thomas' easygoing warmth helps to melt Stiles' icy veneer, and one of Dance's few pleasures is an extended musical segment where she tries to ape his homeboy posturings.

    USA Today Full Review
  • Maitland McDonagh

    An utterly formulaic, teen-oriented romance whose greatest asset is charming leads Julia Stiles and Sean Patrick Thomas.

    TV Guide Full Review
  • Charles Taylor

    For all its dumb clichés it offers the basic appeal of teen movies: the pleasure of watching kids be kids, acting as they do among themselves instead of how parents and teachers expect them to act. Full Review
  • Jessica Winter

    The disjointed plotting and afterschool-special dialogue offer scant opportunity for the charismatic leading duo to work up much chemistry.

    Village Voice Full Review
  • Robert Koehler

    Grounded in bedrock formula and earnestness.

    Variety Full Review
  • Rita Kempley

    Takes its cues from the musical dramas of the '70s, but this otherwise engaging young-adult romance never quite catches Saturday night fever.

    Washington Post Full Review
  • Lisa Schwarzbaum

    This wan, formulaic teen movie from ''Metro'' director Thomas Carter is afraid to pump up the volume on its own interracial, hip hop Romeo and Juliet story, lest it challenge even one sedated viewer or disturb the peace.

    Entertainment Weekly Full Review
  • Kim Morgan

    Filled with too many issues -- along with young motherhood, street gangs, city life, sex, peer pressure, grief and, oh yes, dancing, which is nearly lost in so many poorly written subplots.

    Portland Oregonian Full Review
  • Lou Lumenick

    Recycles every cliché of the genre to sleep-inducing effect.

    New York Post Full Review
  • Joe Morgenstern

    This teenage interracial romance runs hot and cold, sweet and silly, with many more fits than starts.

    Wall Street Journal Full Review
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